Thursday, August 24, 2006

A Tale of Two Princesses

Granny and Granpa W. lived in a big white farm house. In the early 60's, the house had plumbing in the kitchen, but no indoor bathroom. Granny and Granpa had an oval, galvanized tin bathtub that they kept on the backporch.

Both grandparents were avid gardeners and the house was surrounded by flowers and shrubs. Granny had a very large flower bed in the front of the house. In the spring, the bed was a kaleidoscope of colorful tulips in all shapes and sizes.

One spring in the early 60's, my cousins were visiting with Granny and Granpa W. G was my "best friend" cousin ( and she still you, G!!) because we were close to the same age and we liked so many of the same things. I also greatly admired G because she had lived in England which was quite impressive to a little girl from Arkansas.

Once upon a time there came a lovely spring day. A gentle, warm breeze whispered through the trees. Bees were buzzing and the flowers were bursting forth in bloom. I was at Granny and Granpa's house playing with G. G and I were feeling quite royal in such a glorious setting so we decided to pretend we were princesses. We designated Granny's backporch as our royal chambers and proceeded to issue orders to G's pesky little brother, BJ, whom we graciously allowed to play with us as long as he understood that he was our servant. I don't remember whose idea it was to take a royal bath in Granny's tin bathtub, but that is what we decided to do. Rather than use water to bathe in like mere commoners, we chose to immerse ourselves in flower petals. Granny's tulip bed provided the most luxurious flowers around so we commanded BJ to bring us petals from that divine source. BJ's sturdy little legs made trip after trip around the house while G and I reclined in opposite ends of the tub. He tossed hundreds of tulip petals on our bare legs. What richness!! What luxury!! We giggled and whispered as little princesses do and tossed handfuls of petals up in the air so that they fell in our hair and made small puddles on the floor of the porch. Eventually, Granny's tulips were stripped bare.

As so often occurs, calamity struck our kingdom. A raging dragon in the form of our Granny invaded the backporch. I will swear to this day that she was breathing fire and smoke billowed around her head. A switch was swinging madly from Granny's hand. The two princesses were none to gently removed from their bath and the switch was applied to their royal backsides. BJ was spared from the plague of punishment because we ordered him to bring us the petals and "we should have known better". In abject misery, G and I were herded around the house to view the destruction of Granny's tulip bed. It was a very sad sight. Tulip stems minus petals simply do not please the eye. Switched backsides were bad enough, but disappointing our Granny was even worse. Our kingdom fell into disarray. We tearfully abdicated our throne.

The End


Blogger Karmyn R said...

Did we have the same grandmother? Fortunately, mine never switched me - but I did see steam and fire coming out of her mouth a couple of times.

GREAT STORY! I loved it!!!!!

9:54 PM  
Anonymous G said...

Thank you for the wonderful memory!! We were "bad" hehehe.
Maybe that is why we both now love to grow flowers?? And I think BJ would do it all again just to see us get in trouble!!!
Love G

11:25 PM  
Blogger willowtree said...

Very poignent story, I have a couple like it myself.

At the time you're just sad to have disappointed them, later you're sad because you realise that they saw it as vandalism and not a fairytale.

2:52 AM  
Blogger ElleCharlie said...

What a great story, you tell it beautifully - I'm sorry you fairyland crumbled around you, but what a funny tale it makes for the rest of us!!!

3:36 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

What a vision! I bet that was great fun - until the dragon showed up. I have to agree with G, maybe that has a little something to do with why you love to grow flowers.

Did you ever hear your Granny laugh about it later? That is such a cute story, I would think she would look back on it and giggle.

Disappointing a loved one is punishment itself, just realized later than the switchin'.

10:03 PM  
Blogger Pamela said...

Imagine grandma telling that story for years after.

It must have brought her year many tears of delightful laughter EXCEPT FOR THAT DAY

10:19 AM  

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